3/7/13

What Traveling Taught Me

Before we went to Turks & Caicos for 8 days, I wrote what I thought were BRILLIANT plans to travel with kids.  You can read my proud post {here}  Most of them held true.  Some I was able to practice.  I did come away with a few notes on how to improve next time.

Some tips still stand true:
* Stay calm.  Set low expectations. Dress comfortably.

Some notes to improve upon:
Bring new things to do, but don't overpack.
With the glorious invention of portable DVD players and iPads, my kids wanted to do nothing else than watch shows.  Fine by me.  Here's the catch - there are those two miserable times during a flight when "all electronic devises must be turned off and stowed."  Don't turn on a show until you're in the air.  Do your best to prep that this will eventually have to be shut off and have a coloring book or new snack prepared for the impending meltdown when they have to stop watching Mickey mid-show.  Needless to say, we had about 6 coloring books that never got touched.

Skip the suckers and go with gummy bears or fruit snacks.
Our go-to ear popping trick was a sucker, but with the colds and congestion, the air pressure during our decent was absoltuely brutal.  How do you tell a kid "just yawn and pop your ears?"  The suckers did little to help.  Thankfully, Grandma had packed licorice, so we were all chewing like cows to encourage their little jaws to keep moving.

Don't forget snacks for yourself.
I don't know about you, but I get super crabby when I get hungry.  Fussiness is harder to tolerate when you're a hungry beast.  Sure goldfish crackers are good for the kids, and just fine in a pinch, but don't forget to keep your own blood sugar up too!

But it bears to reiterate... STAY CALM.
Kid are unpredictable and traveling only exacerbates that. There will be tantrums, meltdowns and screaming fits. And that's only between you and your partner. The kids will bring it to a whole new level. Expect the worse, you can only be pleased with your ability to predict your child's behavior, or pleasantly surprised if things go better than the shit-fit you were expecting.

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